Player Spotlight: Adalberto Mondesi

Player Spotlight: Adalberto Mondesi

Royals Shortstop Adalberto Mondesi

Royals Shortstop Adalberto Mondesi

The projections next to the player’s name are an average of THE BAT, ATC, Steamer, and ZIPS projections systems found on Fangraphs. NFBC ADP data is from the date range 02/01/2019-03/05/2019. Should you buy the Adalberto Mondesi hype?

Adalberto Mondesi, KC (ADP 41): 570 PA, 73 R, 20 HR, 64 RBI, 40 SB, .252/.291/.436/.727

Undoubtedly the most polarizing player in fantasy baseball, Mondesi is either a potential top 10 player or a complete bust for 2019 depending on who you ask. As usual, the answer lies in between. He’s a former top prospect that experienced a monster post-hype breakout at age 22 last season. Is that a profile you may be interested in? Let’s dig into the numbers behind Mondesi’s breakout to find out if it’s for real.

His first taste of the big leagues came at age 20 and he wildly disappointed in 47 games (.185 BA). 2017 saw an even worse 25 MLB games in his age 21 season (.170 BA. So when Mondesi was called up last year after 29 games in AAA, there weren’t a ton of people on his bandwagon. He proceeded to prove doubters wrong by slashing .276/.306/.498/.804 with 14 HR and 32 SB over 75 MLB games. If you extrapolate those numbers over a full season (don’t do this!) then you’ve got something like 30 HR and 70 SB. I’m not sure we’ve ever seen a season like that but there are certainly at least a few prospective owners dreaming on it. I’m running in the opposite direction, however. I’ve sold my shares and don’t plan on paying anything higher than about the 100th pick on him.

In my opinion, Mondesi is a huge batting average risk, as he’s shown in the MLB previously. He was also batting just .250 in AAA when he was recalled last year. To be fair, he did bat .306 in AAA in 2017, though, so I suppose it’s possible he repeats his 2018 average. I just find it highly unlikely. Ok, so even if his batting average tanks he’ll still steal a ton of bases right? Not so fast. With a comically low walk rate of 3.8% last year, his steals are going to be fueled by that batting average. If he ain’t hittin’, he ain’t stealin’. And if he’s not stealing 40+ bases then he’s… Tim Anderson? I actually think those players are very comparable. Don’t draft the one who’s going 100 picks ahead of the other.

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